Tag Archives: The Voyage

Poetry Picks 0f 2011: Zenobia Frost

2011 has but a few hours left in its sail…. it has been the most amazing year of my life – the incredible response to the Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Fundraiser, winning The Johnno, turning 40, the birth of T.H.E. Nunn to name a few milestones – and now I am looking forward to diving headlong into 2012. But before the new year kisses us sweetly, let’s take a look at one last book from this year. And in doing so, I will leave the last word to Zenobia Frost.


Thirty Australian Poets
Edited by Felicity Plunkett
Available widely and online at Penguin Books Australia

Writing in The New Australian Poetry in 1979, Tranter described the “Generation of ’68” — a wave of “mainly young” Australian writers experimenting with and against conventional modes of poetics. What Tranter called his “half-serious theory” informed the selection process for this new collection, edited by Queensland poet Felicity Plunkett, which celebrates the diverse, vital voices of contemporary Australian poetry.

Thirty Australian Poets gives us a much richer view of national poetic voice than we’ve had access to in the past. Even in Tranter’s ’79 collection, only two female poets featured — with no Indigenous voices at all. 18 writers in Thirty Australian Poets are female. Les Murray commented in 1968 that “women are writing less well because feminism is there to absorb the energies that otherwise would have gone into literature” (see Tranter’s In Praise of Poets with PhDs ), as if (women) writers have a finite imagination. Many of the poets within these pages are also academics, critics, musicians, screenwriters and editors (along with practising any number of pursuits external to writing), disproving the myth of a writerly starvation economy once and for all. Furthermore, the 30 poets as a whole represent multicultural Australia, featuring both Indigenous writers, such as Samuel Wagan Watson, and — as David McCooey writes in his introduction — poets with “non-Anglophone backgrounds, such as Ali Alizadeh and Danijela Kambaskovic-Sawers.”

On a more personal level, Thirty Australian Poets signalled the first time in a year or more that I’d devoured a whole poetry collection in one sitting. I felt privileged to discover poets I’d never read before — Emily Ballou (whose The Plums  I return to again and again), Kate Middleton, and Simon West, for instance — alongside familiar voices. I particularly enjoyed that, rather than eschewing traditional modes (closed forms, uniform metre) entirely,  these writers more often metamorphosed them, releasing their words from the shackles of strict formalism. If this collection represents a new generation of Australian poets, they are weaving and re-weaving a tapestry of poetics as complex, strong, and infinitely re-formable as a spider’s web.

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Zenobia Frost is a Brisbane-based writer and critic whose poetry has appeared in Cordite, Voiceworks, Overland, and Small Packages. Her chapbooks include The Voyage (SweetWater Press 2009) and Petrichor (2011), a self-published collaboration with Jeremy Thompson. She recently placed 3rd in the 2011 John Marsden Awards for Young Writers. She is otherwise occupied with making the perfect cup of tea.

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Poetry Picks of 2010 – Zenobia Frost

Pam Schindler launched A Sky You Could Fall Into (Post Pressed) at the Queensland Poetry Festival this year. I’d been waiting for Pam’s debut collection for a long while, and it didn’t disappoint. Her poems have a quiet melody that gets under your skin, and a voice that is tender without sentimentality. Frogs, dragonflies, birds and possums are recurring characters in a book where the line between wilderness and suburban Brisbane life blurs joyously. The poet’s hand is invisible; each poem seems to spring straight from the earth.

Reading A Sky You Could Fall Into was like finding space and time to sit and breathe for a little while—something I definitely needed in the middle of a very busy year. Schindler’s language is fresh, warm and intimate. Her poems sparkle with the kind of humour that exists between old friends. Her innate sense of rhythm and ability to spin vivid images from few words are skills I aspire to.

What I loved most about the collection was its sense of place. These are Brisbane poems and Queensland poems, and are best read on the veranda whilst a storm gathers over far-off hills, with a cup of tea in hand and a possum nibbling at an apple slice on the balustrade.

(Read a sample of Pam’s work at foam:e)

 

 Zenobia Frost is a poetic adventurer, hat fetishist and protector of apostrophes. In her writing, Zenobia aims to highlight those common enchantments that are often overlooked. Thus, her debut collection, The Voyage is a whimsical journey on (generally) calm seas with a crew of curious creatures and a compass that points to whichever shore offers the best cup of tea. Zenobia’s poems have found homes in such Australian journals as Going Down Swinging, Small Packages, Stylus, Mascara and Voiceworks. She coordinates The Ruby Fizz Society for Superior People, a light-hearted excuse for performance arts and baked goods.

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QLD Poetry Festival Presents – Poetry on the Riverbend Deck

Queensland Poetry Festival, QLD Writers Centre & Riverbend Books are proud to present the final Poetry on the Deck event for 2009. Join us on the Riverbend deck as we showcase five of the local artists performing at the 2009 QLD Poetry Festival. This QPF showcase event features multi-skilled artist, Angel Kosch (Standing on the Road); winner of The Dream Ain’t Broken chapbook competition Nicola Scholes (Dear Rose); one of Australia’s finest exponents of the Japanese forms haibun and tanka, Jeffery Harpeng (Quarter Past Sometime); poetic adventurer and protector of apostrophes, Zenobia Frost (The Voyage); and experimental writer and musician, Marisa Allen (Fire in the Head).

Date: Tuesday 23 June
Location: Riverbend Books, 193 Oxford St. Bulimba
Time: Doors open for the event at 6pm for a 6:30pm start
Tickets: $10 available through Riverbend Books and include sushi and complimentary wine. To purchase tickets, call Riverbend Books on (07) 3899 8555 or book online at  www.riverbendbooks.com.au

The first two events this year have been hugely successful, so book early to avoid disappointment!

 

About the Poets:

 
Angel KoschAngel Kosch is a Brisbane based multi-skilled artist , currently a core member of Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble – appearing most recently with them as an actor and singer in Food of Love – a Shakespeare Cabaret . In 2002 she self-published a book of poetry, photography and fragments called ‘Standing on the Road – from old bit of paper’ which was recognised in the Queensland Writers Centre magazine ; Following the release of her collection She was interviewed for a thesis on self-publishing, and she has recently started to compile another collection of short stories, poetry and photography. Angel is a singer/songwriter and has been writing and singing since she was about 6. In 2005, she co- wrote and produced  a combined ep Humidity with Gene Miller and Moses Jones. As a visual Artist/photographer, Angel has had a number of solo exhibitions, the most recent being ‘tell me your secrets’ in November 2007. Angel has a long history of community work and social and environmental activism, and this passion for life imbues her driving force of artistic chaos.
 

 

Nicola Scholes

Nicola Scholes won the inaugural Small Change Press “Dream Ain’t Broken Chapbook Competition,” with her collection Dear Rose…, to be launched on July 5. She also won the inaugural Love Poetry Hate Racism open mic competition in 2007. Aside from winning inaugural things, Nicola has had her poems published in The Broadkill Review (USA), Colloquy, Cordite Poetry Review, The Courier-Mail, dotlit, Hecate, holland1945, The Mozzie, Nineteen-O-Splash (NZ), Poems in Perspex: Max Harris Poetry Award 2007, Ripples, Social Alternatives, SpeedPoets, and Stylus Poetry Journal. Her drawings and poems for children have appeared in Cherububble. Nicola has also been involved in Brisbane community theatre for more than ten years. She has performed in plays with Villanova Players, and St. Luke’s Theatre Society. She is currently studying a PhD on representations of the maternal in Allen Ginsberg’s poetry, at the University of Queensland.

 

Jeffrey Harpeng

Jeffrey Harpeng has recently had his third co-operative writing project, a tanka-prose sequence, published in  the Spring 2009 Modern English Tanka. Earlier co-compositions were Four Tellings – A Haibun Sequence, with Beverley George (Aus), and Owen Bullock, and Joanna Preston ( New Zealand ), and Quartet – A String of Haibun, with Patricia Prime ( New Zealand ), Diana Webb ( UK ) and Jeffrey Woodward ( USA ). He is currently completing a second collection of haibun.

 

Marisa Allen

Marisa Allen is a songwriter, musician and performer. Better known as the front woman for the band Bremen Town Musician she had her first book of contemporary poetry ‘Fire in the Head’ published in 2007 through Outsider press, edited by David ‘Ghostboy’ Stavanger. She has been published in Cottonmouth (Western Australia), Tsunami Street Press (Queensland), performed regularly at Outsiders poetry nights, QPF 2007 and has been a feature artist on 4ZZZ radio show ‘The Siren’s Call’ that showcases local women writers, songwriters, poets and musicians. She also had a stint editing local folk stories in Reykjavik, Iceland for guided tourist walks around the city. It seems she can’t stop writing, and always has her pencil sharpened, just in case.

 

 

Zen

Zenobia Frost is a poetic adventurer, hat fetishist and protector of apostrophes whose debut collection, The Voyage, was recently launched by SweetWater Press. In her writing, Zenobia aims to highlight those common enchantments that are often overlooked. Thus, The Voyage is a whimsical journey on (generally) calm seas with a crew of curious creatures and a compass that points to whichever shore offers the best cup of tea. Zenobia’s poems have found homes in such Australian journals as Going Down Swinging, Small Packages, Stylus, Mascara and Voiceworks, and she has recently performed at the Queensland Poetry Festival, Contraverse and Under a Daylight Moon.

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Brisbane Poetry Gig Guide – April 26

Well, I am home, fresh from a great gig today in Brisbane Square Library with Ghostboy, Skye Staniford, DarkWing Dubs and the mighty Sheish Money. Thanks to all who came along.

Here’s what’s happening around town over the next few weeks. Hope to see you somewhere soon…

 

Tuesday April 28
 
Riverbend Books – Poetry On the Deck 
 
Queensland Poetry Festival, QLD Writers Centre & Riverbend Books are proud to present the second Poetry on the Deck event for 2009. Join us on the Riverbend deck and enjoy the rural sounds of Longreach poet, Helen Avery (Seduced by Sky) alongside established local voices Rosanna Licari and Philip Neilsen (Without an Alibi) and emerging poet, Sophia Nugent-Siegal (Oracle).
 
Date: Tuesday 28 April
Location: Riverbend Books, 193 Oxford St. Bulimba
Time: Doors open for the event at 6pm for a 6:30pm start
Tickets: $10 available through Riverbend Books and include sushi and complimentary wine. To purchase tickets, call Riverbend Books on (07) 3899 8555 or book online at http://www.riverbendbooks.com.au/Events/EventDetails.aspx?ID=2199 
 
 
 
 
Saturday May 2
 
Bruce Dawe launches A Good Harvest (Post Pressed, 2009) by celebrated Queensland poet, Maureen Freer. The launch will feature readings of Maureen’s poetry by Ross Clark. Drinks and nibbles will also be served.
 
Where: In the Red Chamber, Parliament House
When: Saturday May 2, 2-4 pm.
All welcome. Free.

Maureen Freer is one of  this state’s best-known and loved poets. Indeed, as Bruce Dawe has said, ‘She is one of our most immediately accessible poets, and one who has established a firm reputation over many years’. She has received a number of awards including the Premier’s Poetry Prize 1987 and the Order of Australia for services to Australian literature, 1984. She was Chair/Convenor of the Brisbane Writers Festival from the early Warana days for fourteen years, and also chaired the 1982 Commonwealth Writers Week.

Maureen was the first person to organise a poetry reading in the Red Chamber — featuring Tom Shapcott, Bruce Dawe, David Rowbotham, John Blight and Rodney Hall. It’s appropriate, then, that what is probably her final collection of verse is launched there also.
 
 
 
Sunday May 3
 
SpeedPoets is back for Round 3 of 2009! Be there as Brisbane’s longest running spoken word/poetry event takes over The Alibi Room (720 Brunswick St. New Farm) on Sunday May 3 from 2:00pm – 5:00pm. The May event features the delicate beauty of Ichabod’s Crane: http://www.myspace.com/ichabodscranemusic. This Brisbane ensemble conjures the sounds of horses being ridden on sand and snake tails speeding beneath gumboots… music to be shipwrecked to! And to celebrate the pending launch of her debut collection ‘Voyage’, Zenobia Frost will perform a short feature set with a special appearance from Madrigal Maladies, her collaboration with Nerissa Rowan and if that’s not enough for you, winner of The Dream Ain’t Broken Chapbook Competition, Nicola Scholes will also perform a short feature set, showcasing poems from her forthcoming collection. As always there will also be live sounds from the SpeedPoets poetic riff generator Sheish Money, giveaways, free zines and two rounds of Open Mic. Entry is a gold coin… This is a gig not to be missed!
 
SpeedPoets, Sunday May 3 @ The Alibi Room, 720 Brunswick St. New Farm. 2:00pm – 5:00pm.
 
 
then get along to…
 
 
The launch of The Voyage, a poetry chapbook concerning the adventures of Zenobia Frost with illuminations by Bettina Walsh.
 
Time: 7:00pm
!Metro Arts Basement
109 Edward Street, Brisbane
Featuring [~support act James Sherlock~]
$5 entry / free drinks and nibblies
http://zenobiafrost.wordpress.com/
 
Presented by SweetWater Press
 
 
 
Saturday May 16
 
Words or Whatever – Performance poetry @ Blackstar Cafe 44 Thomas St West End from 6:30pm.

Featured acts this month include – Dissent of Didymus, Darkwing Dubs, Luke Townson + Special guests including some non english speaking poets.

As well as these awesome acts, we wil have our regular features including ‘Words of Honour’ (tribute pieces to great wordsmiths) &  ‘Words-worth’ – Live Poetry Auction.

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